What is Hope?
Hbr 11:1 ESV – Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
“Things hoped for” is an interesting expression in this description of faith. I am a person of faith, and I know that many Americans, and most of my friends are as well. According to the Bible, faith is the assurance of things hoped for. That’s well and good, but what are the things we hope for, and what is hope, anyway?
Is hope just the fleeting desires of one’s own comfort? “I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow.” “I hope I get that job.” Is there something deeper to it? When I read the news, Facebook, and most other media outlets, why does it seem that the vast majority of people have no hope? Am I delusional in this? While I was in Chisinau this past August, almost every single young person that I walked by had a dull sense of hopelessness in their eyes. Maybe it’s a cultural difference, but I think it’s just a prevalent in the faces of American youth.
So, what is hope? Why do so many people lack it? Do I have it?
I think hope deals with an understanding, at some deep level, that things aren’t OK. The fact that things are broken goes without saying. What I think is more subtle is the understanding that we aren’t actually going to fix it. Whatever it is that’s wrong with this world is beyond us. We innovate and work and manufacture, and yet there is still mass pain and suffering. Even in the most industrialized and affluent nations, a natural disaster can obliterate perceived safety in a matter of seconds. There is no safe haven. No matter where we go, there is something wrong.
This ever present brokenness automatically casts each person into 1 of 3 categories:
- Those who don’t know about the brokenness or just don’t care about it.
- Those who think there is no solution
- Those who think that one day, all will be corrected.
Which one are you?